Joe Musgrove’s disastrous spring training debut is worrisome for Padres

Can we get a do-over?

San Diego Padres pitcher Joe Musgrove
San Diego Padres pitcher Joe Musgrove / Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

The first game of spring training, just like Opening Day itself, is full of overreactions. But after watching Joe Musgrove get absolutely shellacked during the San Diego Padres' Cactus League opener, maybe AJ Preller should be asking Scott Boras if Blake Snell has lowered his contract demands yet.

Musgrove toed the rubber for the Friars during Thursday's game against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Peoria, and the right-hander didn't even make it out of the first inning. Not only that, Musgrove didn't even record a single out.

Musgrove faced four batters, allowed two hits and one walk, and exited after allowing a two-run ground rule double to the Dodgers' new outfielder, Teoscar Hernandez.

Joe Musgrove’s disastrous spring training debut is worrisome for Padres

Carter Loewen came on in relief, and offered up more of the same, going less than an inning and allowing four runs on three hits, including a two-run bomb to Kevin Padlo. Thankfully, Gabe Mosser was able to stop the bleeding, after inducing two fly ball outs to help the Friars get out of the first inning.

Before the Padres even came up to bat in the bottom of the first inning, Fernando Tatis Jr. and Co. were in an 8-0 hole. If there's was a mercy rule in spring training, new Padres manager Mike Shildt would've been waving the white flag.

To make matters worse, it wasn't as if the Dodgers' new $700 million man, Shohei Ohtani, was the one doing damage. Ohtani didn't even make the trip from Camelback Ranch. If this is sign of things to come, the Friar faithful may just want to sleep on when the Seoul Series jumpstarts the MLB regular season at 3 a.m. PST next month.

Hopefully, Musgrove and the rest of the Padres pitching staff will get their act together in the coming days. Musgrove needs to knock off the cobwebs after an injury-riddled 2023 campaign and be the Padres' ace in 2024. Otherwise, it's going to be a long season for Pads fans.

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